The Prince of Fraud

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In an era of British imperial expansion, with limited social mobility at home, men with ambition, energy, and imagination looked to the wide world for opportunities to make their fortune. It didn’t seem odd… Continue reading

The Oregon Trail

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With summer fast approaching for those of us who live in the United States, dinner table discussions in a lot of homes have been centering around summer vacations. If a road trip holds… Continue reading

History of American Crime: Getting Organized

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Director Martin Scorsese’s 2002 blockbuster film, Gangs of New York, introduced viewers to a bit of history that does not get much space in school textbooks. If organized crime and gangs get any mention… Continue reading

Orkney and the Hudson’s Bay Company

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Folks from the Orkney Islands in Scotland impacted the exploration and settlement of Canada by Europeans heavily, particularly through their close connections to the Hudson’s Bay Company. It isn’t difficult to understand why… Continue reading

First In Freedom

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As a new resident of a new state, I have been going through the ritual of getting a new driver’s license, voter registration, car registration and all the other obligations that come with… Continue reading

History of American Crime: Murder and the Public in the 19th Century

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From the truly heinous to the seriously ridiculous, antisocial human activity has been codified in the New World since colonial times. And as human nature has not changed all that much since Cain… Continue reading

Malacca and the World in 1511

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The wide reach of history weighs on me since my visit to Malacca last month when one date in particular sparked my curiosity: 1511. The ruins of a Portuguese fort in that UNESCO World… Continue reading

Lady Day

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It seemed appropriate that since the first week of April marks the anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that I should write about an ongoing struggle for civil rights,… Continue reading

Party with Your Boots On!!

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  I am going to break into my series on American crime to share a taste of true Texas heritage and tradition. As the saying goes, I was not born in Texas, but I got… Continue reading

The Natchez Trace

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Once young men routinely floated their goods—products of the farms and settlements of newly formed states and territories—down the Ohio, Wabash, and Illinois rivers to the Mississippi and on to New Orleans. They… Continue reading